- May 16, 2017
- Posted by: Harpreet
- Category: Tax Tips
Cyber Attacks & Ransomware
With cyber attacks and security issues on the rise and the CRA becoming more technology friendly, it is vital to remember the below items as you go through any correspondence received from the CRA:
CRA will not do the following:
– send an email with a link and ask you to divulge personal or financial information.
– ask for personal information of any kind by email or text message.
– request payments by prepaid credit cards.
– Share your tax information with another person, unless formal authorization is provided by the taxpayer.
– leave personal information on an answering machine.
– Leave you threatening messages asking for a call back.
Below is an email a client of ours received – we have underlined a few items that should have caused red flags:
From: Canada.Revenue.Agency.CRA.ARG.GC-CA.6263622325msg.SIQKfirstname.lastname@example.org <Canada.Revenue.Agency.CRA.ARG.GC-CA.6263622325msg.SIQKemail@example.com>
Sent: May 15, 2017 2:34 PM
Subject: New applicant form [return : $407.37 CAD] [ID:6263345325]
– After the last annual calculation of your fiscal activity we have determined that you are eligible to receive a tax refund of 407.37 CAD
– Please fill the secure tax return form and allow us 2-3 business days to process it
Secure form : http://cra-arg.gc.ca/applicat-return /407.37/6263345325 (DO NOT OPEN THIS LINK)
Tax Return Number: GB232UUSSH1
Recipient e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
In this instance, the client called our office straight away to confirm the legitimacy of this email and to verify if this is one of those Cyber Attacks. If in doubt, call the CRA general business line at 1800.959.5525 or personal tax line at 1800.959.8281 to obtain more information.
Take Preventative Steps
Even if you have not been a victim, there are steps you can take to minimize your risk:
- Use a Web browser that meets CRA’s security standards
- Change your password regularly
- Do not communicate personal information by email
- Send CRA your change of address when you move
- Shred unwanted documents or store them in a secure place
- Do not carry your SIN card on you and do not provide your SIN# to anyone
- Password protect documents you send via electronically, especially if they contain your personal information
Click here for more Suggestions and Tips by CRA on preventing yourself from Cyber Attacks